Should gambling be completely legal?
In episode 49 of Supreme Court Briefs, New Jersey tries to legalize sports betting, so NCAA and four professional sports leagues sue them. #supremecourtbriefs #10thamendment #apgov
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Produced by Matt Beat. All images by Matt Beat, found in the public domain, or used under fair use guidelines. Music: "In the Atmosphere" by Bad Snacks.
Special thanks to the AP Archive for footage for this video. It made a huge difference! AP Archive website: http://www.aparchive.com
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November 8, 2011
Citizens vote to make betting on sports legal. This was a big deal. At the time, 97% of all sports bets placed in the country were illegal.
The New Jersey state legislature then passed and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie signed into law the Sports Wagering Act of 2012, which let citizens place sports bets at casinos and racetracks. Well the NCAA, NBA, NFL, NHL, and MLB were like “nuh-uhh.” They sued Governor Christie, arguing that New Jersey legalizing sports betting went against the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act, aka PAPSA, passed by Congress back in 1992. This law banned betting on sports except for a few special places that were exempt. Well apparently New Jersey was not special enough.
Governor Christie was like “Yeah, I KNOW New Jersey legalizing sports betting went against PAPSA, but the Tenth Amendment is on our side.” You see, the Supreme Court had previously established this thing called the Anti-Commandeering Doctrine in two cases, New York v. United States (1992) and Printz v. United States (1997). The doctrine basically said the federal government can’t force states or state officials to adopt or enforce federal laws.
Soon the U.S. Department of Justice joined forces with the sports leagues, and when they went to U.S. District Court in February 2013, their main argument was that sports gambling not only hurt their leagues, but hurt the integrity of the sports. The judge agreed and ruled with the sports leagues and Justice Department.
Governor Christie and New Jersey appealed to the Third Circuit Appeals Court, but they upheld the ruling. After the Supreme Court refused to hear another appeal in the spring of 2014, the New Jersey legislature went back to the drawing board. Since the Sports Wagering Act was unconstitutional, they just went back and repealed parts of existing New Jersey laws from 1977 that had banned sports gambling. Oh snap. What a sneaky way to legalize sports gambling. But Governor Christie was like “sorry, not sorry” and vetoed the repeals, saying “we can’t just bypass the Third Circuit’s ruling, guys. However, just a few months later, Christie changed his mind and signed it into law.
Welp, the five sports leagues sued New Jersey again in November 2014. Yet again, the District Court and Third Circuit ruled in favor of the sports leagues.
But Christie and New Jersey begged the Supreme Court to consider an appeal again, specifically bringing up the question “Does a federal statute that prohibits modification or repeal of state-law prohibitions on private conduct impermissibly commandeer the regulatory power of States?” and they cited good ol’ New York v. United States as precedent. Well that got the Court’s attention this time. They agreed to hear the case on June 27, 2017.
The Court heard oral arguments on December 7, 2017. By this time, New Jersey had elected a new governor, Phil Murphy.
Was originally published at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fxxenhr5xuU